The Complete Guide To Painting Over Render In Australia (2022 Edition)

What Is Render And Why Use It? 

Render is a particular type of finish to houses that is and has been prevalent over Australia for decades now. Identifiable by its lightly textured surface that resembles concrete, it improves the exterior appearance of a house, and also increases the weather resistance of a home subject to the harsh environmental conditions in Australia. Usually applied over exterior brick walls, it can also be used on concrete, stone, mud-brick walls or fences and interior brick walls. Painting over render helps to protect it and increase the durability of a versatile building surface.   

There are two main types of render available on the market today: acrylic render or cement render.

Acrylic Render

Acrylic render is sold pre-packaged and has acrylic, a type of plastic, in its mix. This makes it more flexible and resistant to cracks in future as well being able to apply to many different surfaces. However, acrylic render is more difficult to apply DIY. Whilst acrylic render can be painted and can be a great option for some homes, this article will specifically focus on cement render as a render surface. 

Cement Render

Traditional cement render is made up of fine sand, cement, water and sometimes lime or clay. It is then applied to walls in a process similar to painting. Cement rendering a home is an easy and cost-effective way to update the appearance of outdated homes that lack street appeal and need to be freshened up. It is also an added layer of protection to the exterior of a home, particularly in places that are exposed to coastal conditions or very wet or dry environments that are hard on the durability of brick or concrete homes. 

So if faced with needing to modernise the exterior of a home or simply wanting a fresh look, cement render is an ideal solution for any brick, stone or concrete home.  

Painting Over Render

Can Cement Render Be Painted?

Yes, cement render can be painted and is in fact one of the great things about it, as the design of a home can be personalised depending on current colour trends, aesthetics or personal taste.

However, there are a few things to consider before starting painting render. If it is newly applied cement render, it will need to dry or ‘cure’ for 4 – 6 weeks before being painted, particularly if in a wet area or season. This is to ensure that all the moisture in the render dries properly and won’t become trapped in the surface once painted. This could cause paint bubbles or cracks in the future.   

What Kind Of Paint Do You Use For Rendering? 

The correct type of paint is essential for a quality finish. Not just any type of paint will suffice. A good quality exterior wall paint like Dulux Weathershield, or one specifically made for painting over render is the best choice of paint. Visiting a local paint shop and asking their painting experts for advice on the best one to choose is always a good idea.

They will have knowledge of which paints perform best in that local area and take seasonal weather and environmental conditions into account. Also, make sure if the paint requires a primer or stabilising solution on the rendered surface before commencing any render painting project.

How To Paint Over Rendered Walls: The 7 Steps To Painting Over Render 

This is the process to follow to effectively paint over render.

Step 1: Have The Right Equipment

Ensuring that all necessary equipment is organised beforehand can help save time and avoid mishaps. Make sure there is a sufficient amount of paint and primer/stabilising solution (if required) for the entire project. Leftover paint can always be stored away and used in future for any touch-ups.

Handy items to have include, drop sheets, a paint tray, paint stirrer, a straight and angled paint brush, large paint roller, sealant for cracks and masking tape. Suitable eye protection and covering exposed skin with long sleeves or coveralls is also a good idea when working with paint and chemicals. 

Step 2: Clean The Surface

Paint preparation is key to achieving success and avoiding a poor paint finish. Ensure the painting surface is clean and dry. Use a stiff brush or broom to clean off dust, old render or flaking paint. If the dirt is caked on, use a hose or a high-pressure cleaner to clean the surface for painting but ensure that it is fully dry to avoid moisture issues later on in the painting process.

Also, check for any areas of the walls that have moss or mildew, particularly in the more shaded areas. If there are, carry out treatments to clean it off and ensure it won’t return after the paint job is completed. A moss killer can be bought from a local garden store, but baking soda is also a cheap option. Clean off mildew and prevent future regrowth by using a bleach solution.     

Step 3: Repair Any Cracks And Fill Holes

Check the walls carefully for any hairline cracks, chipped render, or holes. Cover these with a sealant or for larger cracks, fill with cement render. Ensure that either sealant is completely dry before continuing. 

Sealant can also fill any gaps near windows, doors or gutters. If using masking tape, this is a good time to apply to any edges that can’t get paint on them. 

Complete Guide To Painting Over Render In 2022

Step 4: Sand The Render

If sealant or new render was used to repair any hairline cracks, after allowing it to dry properly, it is time to sand back any uneven parts of the rendered surface. Wipe away any resulting dust. 

Step 5: Apply The Stabilising Solution

This next step only applies if a primer or stabilising solution is required. A primer will increase the paint surface adhesion, which will result in a better paint finish and increase longevity. Follow the instructions supplied with the primer and allow enough time for the primer to dry and set properly before moving onto the next step. 

Step 6: Apply The Exterior Paint

Use the angled or straight brush to cut in on the edges and around window and door frames. Then, using the large paint roller, cover the area using long, uniform strokes until the entire section is complete. This will ensure an even paint application. 

Step 7: Apply A Second Coat If Needed

Some types of paint will only require a single coat. However, it is generally good practice to apply a second coat, not only will the colour be more saturated and even, but it will increase the longevity and the durability of the paint job. 

Sound Like Too Much Work?

Painting the exterior render of a home can be a lengthy and labour-intensive process. Luckily, the professional albany painters of Phoenix Painting & Decorating are here to help with a wide range of painting needs and expert advice. If you’re near Albany, Western Australia & are looking for some assistance – reach out to the team who will be happy to help.

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